First Thanksgiving was 50 years earlier—and Catholic

Fifty years before the pilgrims arrived in Plymouth, Spanish settlers celebrated the first “Thanksgiving” in what is now present-day Florida—and it began with the Eucharist! The country’s oldest city, St. Augustine, was founded on Sept. 8, 1565 when Spanish explorer Pedro Menéndez de Avilés came ashore in north-eastern Florida (then a wilderness) with a group …

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